Your Dream Job Becomes A Nightmare…

I write whenever I have time and whenever I have inspiration and it just so happens that I also love writing prompts! I’m aware that some people love them and some people don’t, but I came across this writing prompt and it just got me thinking… “Your dream job becomes a nightmare…”

When I saw this writing prompt I couldn’t help but laugh! My dream job is to be a nurse practitioner and along the way is nursing assistant, registered nurse, bachelors in nursing, and then nurse practitioner. All along the path I have chosen is the fact that my dream job can go from amazing to a nightmare in a blink of an eye! I could save a life, be the smile and the kind soul when life looks bleak, I can heal a hurting heart, or a broken leg. But at the same time I could lose a patient, I could become stressed, frazzled and frustrated, I could get hit, scratched, bit and yelled at, I could unknowingly be healing a symptom and not the problem, or I could not know of a problem until too late.

A bad day is like a nightmare, depending on how you see it. Sometimes you’re looking at the bad day so closely that it seems like a nightmare until you step back and realize that it was something so small! I have the problem of getting so worked up on the details that I fail to see the big picture sometimes! However, I know that patients often express frustration in anger, that people in general usually do not like to go to the doctor’s office or hospital and that pain is subjective. A person could be a level 8 on the pain scale and be laughing and joking. It doesn’t mean their pain is any less, and it doesn’t automatically mean that they lied. But at the time, yes that could add to a “nightmarish” day! But while so many things could go wrong, so many things could go right too. I believe it is our choices that make dreams and nightmares. A badly thought out plan, failing to understand where another person is coming from, misunderstandings, all these choices and accidents can cause a “nightmarish day” but remembering that a person’s frustration or pain, and remembering to control your own emotions/feelings can quickly defuse a nightmare back to a dream.

I think the writing prompt was a good one mostly because it is a prompt that could go either way but why dwell on the fact that your dream job COULD be a nightmare? It just seems…too… pessimistic! I’d rather focus on keeping my mind on my dream: to help people.

What about you? What is your dream job? And what would you do if it became a nightmare?

Makayla

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The Lesson I Learned on my Last Day of Clinicals

Sorry this is a bit late; Friday was my last day of clinicals!! YAY!! We had no residents to care for because it was our day to talk about EVERYTHING!

We talked about the sign up process for the State Exam and how they only do a few days every month. This means that my class will probably not get into a testing date until January or February. WE also filled out our applications in class so that we could be sure we filled them out completely. We also talked about how important it is to get back into the classroom to do open lab at least a few times before the end of the year because of the bad habits one picks up in the nursing home.

On a brighter note, I am officially done with the NAC class course! My classmates and I all passed, we are NAR’s at the moment and as soon as we take (and Pass!) the State Exam we will be NAC’s! It is quite exciting! We thought this day would never come! J

Overall, it was a really easy day! After our little conference we had the option of helping feed the residents and to say good bye. I am not a good bye kind of person, so I did not have to help feed or say goodbye, but that is fine.

The Lesson I learned in clinicals? It isn’t as scary as everyone led me to believe. I knew my information, I studied hard and I used my heart and common sense more than anything. Now if only someone told me that at the beginning of this journey!

What is your Personality Type?

So earlier this week I had made a post on Personality Types and I’m just curious what different types of personalities are reading my blog! 🙂

6th Day of Clinicals

Clinicals are no longer scary at the nursing home. My classmates and I know the names of every single resident; we know most of their conditions and if we don’t we can work the computers flawlessly now. We know almost everyone who works the evening shift and we also know those we like and those we don’t. We’re also finding that it’s almost too easy now too! I’m overjoyed to be working with the resident’s! I think they are magnificent! And I too found taking care of my resident today to be rather easy and slow. Everyone in my class is confident in our skills and we also all passed the class! We all get to embark on a new grand adventure!

Today I had a resident who really, REALLY loves bed. My resident, “K”, doesn’t like to get out of bed and even if she is in bed, she asks you to put her to bed. I’m all for sleep but even I like to get out of bed every once in a while! Regardless, “K” loves bed. My professor knew this, and she also knows that I’m not the greatest at conversation. I can listen and be understanding but it’s hard for me to start conversations and then keep them going. So my professor gave me a challenge: I had to get “K” to the dining hall, hold a conversation with her and do something with her after dinner (that wasn’t going to bed). It was actually easier than I thought it was, especially when it became a competition sort of thing. I not only convinced “K” to come to the dining hall but I also held a forty minute conversation with her during dinner! We talked about Thanksgiving, Turkey meat (white vs. dark), Christmas, How Santa Claus is real, Snow, making snowmen, snow cats and snow dogs, colors of Christmas, hats (“K” loves hats! Her mother makes them for her) with matching scarves, the dinner menu (Tater Tot Casserole!) and, of course, her wish to go to bed when she finished eating.

After “K” finished eating she told me to take her straight to her room to go to bed. And as I was wheeling her towards her room, she started to get bossy! J “Next left! Go faster! Put me in my bed!” and the whole time I was thinking, “How in the world am I going to delay your bedtime?!?” So I had her brush her teeth, wash her face, and apply Chap Stick. Then I helped get her into her gown when I noticed that her nails had some sharp corners. LIGHT BULB! “Hey “K”, I noticed your nails are little sharp would you like me to file them a bit?” and she said sure! YAY! So I decided to have a bit of idle chit-chat while I filed her nails:

Me: “What’s your favorite color “K”?”

“K”: “I like red and dusty rose.”

Me: “Oh those are beautiful colors! You know I think I have some dusty rose nail polish in the back room! Why don’t I paint your nails for you?”

“K”: “Okay! I like dusty rose…”

BOOM! I win professor because it took me forty minutes to get her nails cleaned, filed and painted! After dinner activity completed! Then I was able to get her into bed, change her briefs and let her sleep. I felt very accomplished!

Overall though it was a really easy day which was nice given that my foot was still killing me! Tomorrow is the last day of clinicals and then I’ll have graduated the NAC class! YAY!!!

Makayla

Why It’s A Shame Writing Letters Went Extinct

“Writing isn’t letters on paper. It’s communication. It’s memory.”

– Isaac Marion

Writing letters is a lost art now days. Letters used to be the sole communication between people, but now it’s been replaced with the telephone, the cell phone, texting, chat rooms, emails, instagram, Facebook, snap chats, etc. Don’t get me wrong! I’m all for moving forward to bigger and better things, in fact I love technology and I’m excited for any new electronic toy I can discover, but I wished some things stayed as they were. Writing letters is one of them.

I may only be in my early twenties but I think beautiful, long, handwritten, sappy love letters are wonderful. I love seeing handwriting on paper instead of computer script. I love getting mail in my mailbox and opening an envelope to read a multi-paged letter over a cup of tea. It’s personal. It takes time to write a letter and just the thought alone can make you smile. Because someone loved you enough to hand write you a letter.

Not only that but writing letters is also an introvert’s dream! We can write and have a conversation with someone without ever talking or getting drained. We’re able to plan outings days in advance and wouldn’t have to stress when people ask us last minute to go hang out. As an introvert, I hate last minute plans but I also am very kind- most of my friends are extroverts, and I know that they need the socialization. I try to hang out with them one day and use the next to recharge, but not everyone understands that. Hence, letters would work out the best! I wouldn’t be that deer in the headlight struggling with being drained and nice, or recharged and selfish.

I sometimes think that maybe letters went extinct for that very reason. Maybe when extroverts couldn’t handle the quiet and wanted to be able to talk with more people at a faster pace they had to come up with some technology to accommodate them. Or maybe Alexander Graham Bell was an extrovert and knew that other extroverts needed more people talking. Either way, letters have long sense faded away, but to me I’ll still handwrite thank you cards, write letters to friends far away rather than text them and send letters to family whenever I find time. Why? Because I know how I feel when I receive a handwritten note, I feel special! Shouldn’t I wish that upon others that I love and care about too?

What are your views on letters? How do you think letters went extinct?

Makayla

5th Day of Clinicals

Today’s clinicals was not as worrisome as I anticipated it to be – given the fact that I had two residents to take care of that were both two person transfers. In fact everything went pretty smoothly except for my heel/foot. (I sort of sympathize with Achilles and his greatest weakness being his heel. My goodness it got very painful by the end of my shift!) I learned quite a bit today though!

Like I said earlier, I had two residents. They were roommates and two person transfers for both.

In Bed 1 I had my resident, let’s call her “E”. She had a cast on her leg up to her mid-thigh and was a two person transfer because of her leg. “E” was very sweet but she was a bit delirious and hated going to the dining room, so she often ate in her room. I had to leave to take my other resident to the dining hall so I told “E” where I was going and that I’d be right back. I left the door open (like we’re supposed to) and gave “E” her call light/signaling device so she could alert anyone to anything she should need in the time that I was gone. Once I was sure my other resident was comfortable in the dining hall, I headed back to “E’s” room. That’s when I felt this feeling wash over me as I was exiting the dining hall. Something was wrong, dreadfully wrong. No one around me was hurrying anywhere, no alarms or call lights were going off- but something was wrong. I knew it. I hurried back to “E’s” room to find her door was shut. I didn’t shut it and no one else is to go in there unless there’s an emergency (because I’m a student we get the resident to ourselves unless we ask for assistance.) I knocked on the door and didn’t hear any answer so I opened the door stating my name and that I was here to give care. And “E” was not by her bed where I left her. In fact she had wheeled herself to the toilet and was half standing half clinging to the bar for dear life. I panicked! What the heck was she doing??? She had her signaling device she could’ve asked anyone walking by for assistance! I quickly ran to her aid and helped her onto the toilet since there was no way I could get her back into her wheelchair without assistance but my heart was pumping a million beats per minute. She didn’t know what she was doing and just kept saying, “How did you know I was in need of assistance? You came at the right time! And I’m glad you’re here to take care of me!” and I’m just there going, “please don’t do that again!” She did fine after that! Mostly slept!

Once I had finished getting “E” comfortable I went to the dining hall to help feed a resident, “M”. He used to be a drill sergeant but he was very kind to me. My classmate, “J”, used to be in the army and they talked and talked about all things military. I learn a lot from “J” and he was very helpful when I needed his assistance to move “E” to her bed. He is going to be a great Nursing Assistant and Nurse in the future. “J” and I talked with “M” all through dinner and I got to learn how to feed a resident which was nice. It’s not difficult to help someone eat, but it’s hard to remember that you have to tell them what they are eating as you bring it to their mouth and I slipped up a few times. He also warned me several times (in fact several residents have warned me several times), “To not get old! And Take care of your body!” I haven’t decided if this is their way of displaying how they feel or if they are just trying to convey to the younger generation that what we do now affects are future drastically. I plan to mull that over for the next couple of days, if you have an idea feel free to leave a message.

I also took “M” back to his room (he literally has the best room in the house!) and he showed me a picture of his wife. They had been married 52 years before he lost her to pancreatic cancer last year. He almost made me cry when he looked over at his bed and said, “You know, after sleeping in the same bed as someone for 52 years…seeing it empty… it’s enough to break a person.” …These residents are amazing and the stories they tell even more so, but the emotions you feel and the pain they’ve experienced you can’t say “I know how you feel,” you offer respect and kindness but the pain is still there even if it isn’t physical pain.

After getting “M” settled I returned to help my other resident in Bed 2. I had to have the nurse help me transfer her because she needed the sit to stand machine. My resident, let’s just call her “A”, was very fearful of the machine- it was actually very alarming because her usual behavior is not fear. Regardless, it was my first time witnessing a machine and it was frightening and I was just assisting!

The sit to stand machine is a machine where you wheel the resident into the middle of this four pronged steel contraption until their knees touch this padded cushion. You make sure their feet are secure on the non-skid pad and using a harness around their waist and chest you kind of sling them on to the two upper bars of the machine. The resident then has to hold on to the same bar and the machine is slowly lifted up. At this point it looks like the resident is standing in the sitting position, the back never straightens (at least on “A” it didn’t). Then you quickly take out the wheelchair, replace it with the bedside commode (portable toilet) or the bedside and then the machine is lowered to sit them back down. I understood “A’s” fear because the contraption did look scary and she was so worried she was going to fall! Once she had been toileted, changed, and ready for bed, I laid her in bed. This is where her fear escalated to panic. I was confused as to why she thought she was going to fall when she was lying flat on her bed. Not even on the side of the bed, she was in the middle! But her fear, made her cling to my arms as I tried to position her on her side. If you’ve ever tried to move someone who is using you as support in the opposite way that you were intending, you’d know that it is like taking one step forward and two steps back. It took me nearly a half hour to forty-five minutes to change her brief and get her comfortable in bed. It was very challenging.

Overall the day was great with the resident’s, it was slightly emotional too but I was just glad it ended quickly… I don’t know how much more I could take on my foot/heel. But I also know that the Lord would never give me something I couldn’t handle. Either way I’m exhausted. My advice to you would be to not work full-time when you go to clinicals. You’re literally working full-time and then clinicals because another part-time job tagged onto your day. It’s exhausting!

More for next time!

Makayla